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The Nuggets Break Record for Best Start in History After 117-113 win Over Sacramento Kings
Following a New Year’s Day victory against the New York Knicks, The Denver Nuggets headed west to take on the Sacramento Kings. Their historic 117-113 victory puts the Nuggets at 25-11, which is the best start in franchise history.
“I think the reason why we’re playing so well and winning at the level we’re winning at is because guys truly care and love each other and that’s really important for our locker room,” said Nuggets coach Michael Malone.
The win was not as easy-coming as others as they battled the sharp-shooting Sacramento Kings. Gary Harris secured the win with two made free throws at 14.6 left in the game to put the Kings out of range. Jamal Murray, who scored only 2 points in the first half, came out on fire in the second, finishing with 36 points, six assists and 7 rebounds. Jamal attributes his strong play to his teammates.
“My teammates had my back tonight. Everybody came in, especially in the second half, and did a lot of great work and had a good night,” Murray said.
The Nuggets got off to a slow start, shooting 25 percent from the field with two turnovers in the first four minutes. An alley-oop pass from Torrey Craig to Mason Plumlee with 7:39 left in the first quarter, seemed to jump start the Nuggets rhythm. The momentum only continued after Gary Harris, who is playing in his second game after missing time from a hip injury, and Paul Millsap, who is playing his third game after a broken toe, headed to the court with 5:42 on the time clock. Within minutes, Paul’s missed three, rebounded by Craig, turned into a made three by Gary. They finished the first quarter tied at 30.
The tie quickly diminished after the Nuggets started the second quarter with 1-7 shooting, placing the Kings ahead by six, 36-30. The Nuggets struggled from behind the arc, shooting 5-20 at the half compared to the 8-18 made by the Kings, who are ranked 2nd in 3-point percentage. The Nuggets entered the half trailing by 13, 66-53.
A 13-0 run, coupled with two made 3-pointers and a pair of free throws by Jamal Murray, kicked off the third quarter and cut the lead to 4. Jamal would finish the quarter with 17 points, outscoring the rest of the Nuggets who combined for 13 points. After outscoring the Kings 31-18 in the third quarter, the teams entered the fourth quarter tied at 84.
The game’s intensity amplified with the start of the fourth quarter before a close showdown ending with a victory for the Nuggets.
The Nuggets will host the Charlotte Hornets Saturday at 3 p.m. MST. The game will be broadcast live on Altitude TV and streamed on the AltitudeNOW app.